After Voting to Gut DACA for DREAMers and Slamming the Brakes on Common Sense Immigration Reform, House GOP Now Gearing Up Vote to Deny Ability of the President to Use Executive Authority
Yes, it’s gotten this bad. After more than a year of head fakes and false starts on immigration reform that would combine smart enforcement, legal immigration reforms and legal status with a path to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented immigrants in America, the House Republican leadership is taking up legislation designed to keep President Obama from using discretionary authority on a range of issues, including in the arena of immigration policy.
Starting early this afternoon, House Republicans are planning floor action on the ENFORCE Act (HR 4138) and the Faithful Execution of the Law Act (HR 3973). Both bills seek to strip the President’s executive authority. In case there was any confusion about the intentions and implications of these bills, the House Judiciary Committee explicitly cited the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program for DREAMers as a reason why both pieces of legislation are needed (see here and here). This comes just weeks after Speaker John Boehner’s (R-OH) assertion that the House likely would not address immigration before the 2014 midterms.
According to Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America’s Voice:
It seems House Republicans want us all to know that they not only hate the President, they hate immigrants, too. Since actions speak louder than words, let’s review how they’ve done since Speaker Boehner announced the day after the 2012 elections that he intended to work with President Obama on immigration reform. In June of 2013 the House voted to gut the DACA program and subject DREAMers to deportation. Strike one. Just a few weeks ago, Speaker Boehner slammed the brakes on immigration reform, less than a week after he released the leadership’s immigration reform principles. Strike two. Now, House Republicans are trying to impose unconstitutional limits on the President’s ability to help immigrants who would be legalized under the pending legislation the House refuses to vote on. Strike three. So much for the GOP moving away from nativism and demagoguery and towards smart policy and politics.
We’ll be watching closely to see how Republicans who say they are for immigration reform vote. They may want to think twice about being associated with colleagues who are on the verge of taking a tarnished reputation and turning into a permanent one.
- American Immigration Council Blog, “House Members Question and Criticize Rather Than Act to Change Immigration Policies”
- House Judiciary Committee Report that Explicitly Mention DACA as the Rationale Behind the ENFORCE Act (HR 4138): CLICK HERE
- House Judiciary Committee Report that Explicitly Mention DACA as the Rationale Behind the Faithful Execution of the Law Act (HR 3973): CLICK HERE